I know I have ten fics going. I'm completely aware. I've got all but one chapter written to finish one of them. (Actually, I think I have eleven fics going, so I don't actually know the exact number, but I know it's a lot.)
But this idea stuck in my brain until I couldn't take it anymore (It appeared this morning and wore me down 'til about… noon) so I had to write it. Don't kill me, guys.
Full Summary: When Jack and Maddie are invited to a ghost conference by a good friend of theirs, they need to find someone to watch 13 year old Jazz and 11 year old Danny while they're away. To their surprise, Maddie's cousin on her mother's side, Petunia Dursley, is quick to offer, despite the fact that she lives halfway across the world. As if taking care of Danny and Jazz can be considered a vacation.
Warnings: Erm… I usually have some of these, but this fic is actually… normal for once. Oh! My writing style's a little weird here. I don't know why- it just is.
Obligatory Disclaimer Applies.
With all that done, I hope everyone enjoys!
Danny knew he had aunts and uncles. Most of them ignored his parents and pretended they didn't exist-as humans tended to do when faced with people like his parents. He had no idea, however, that his mother had cousins. He also had no idea what was about to happen when his mother's cousin showed up on the front steps one day, greeted her warmly, and proceeded to make herself, her son, and her husband comfortable. The other boy, who didn't really look related to her at all, just walked in so that Maddie could close the door.
Danny, by this point, was really confused, but he walked over to the other boy, who looked a couple of years older than him, and smiled, "Umm, hi."
The boy glanced at him, "Hi."
"Nice to meet you."
He had a really strong English accent, and Danny wondered what other secrets his mother had been keeping from him and Jazz. His mother didn't have an English accent, but if she had English cousins, then she'd obviously been raised in England.
…Obviously. Okay, so Danny's theory made no sense. But if his mother hadn't been raised in England, why would her cousins come all the way FROM England to visit her?
"Daniel, come over here and say hi to your auntie!" The shrill tall woman that was his mother's cousin, and therefore NOT his aunt, called over to him. There would be no telling her that she wasn't actually his aunt, however, so Danny just smiled apologetically at Harry and walked over to give his "auntie" a hug.
A few conversations, the throwing of suitcases, and a few more hugs later, and Danny's parents were gone, leaving for a conference while Petunia (Maddie's cousin), Vernon (her husband), and Dudley (their son) settled into the house as if they'd lived there their whole lives.
Apparently, as Danny found out despite no one telling him anything, they were going to watch Danny and Jazz in exchange for staying in the house while Jack and Maddie were away. Petunia had, apparently, wanted to go on vacation, and with skills rather stalker-like in nature, had found out that Maddie and Jack were looking for babysitters for two weeks. Petunia didn't mind watching two more kids for two weeks (after all, Dudley was oh-so-fun to raise, and it would still be a vacation either way) if she got somewhere to stay for free, so they had jumped on a plane (not literally, as that would have hurt and they probably would have died) and flown to Amity Park (actually, the town next to Amity Park, if we're being technical here, as Amity Park had no airport of its own.) While Amity Park was a weird place to vacation, Petunia was happy with anywhere it was NOT raining constantly, and Vernon was happy if Petunia was happy. Dudley just wanted food, and Petunia was happy to oblige.
Petunia and Vernon would be staying in Jack and Maddie's room, Dudley in the spare room, and there was a blanket thrown on the couch for Harry.
It turns out that his extended family went to bed really early, and seemed to expect Danny and Jazz to do the same, so at 8 o'clock, when Danny and Jazz were in their bedrooms, wide awake, neither trying to sleep, Danny was listening carefully to the snoring from the bedroom next to his.
He was used to snoring. His father snored. A lot. Dudley, if it was even possible, snored more.
Once he was sure no one would be waking up any time soon, he crept out of his bedroom and fled down the stairs to the living room, where Harry was sitting on the couch with a letter in his hands.
"Hey again." Danny waved.
Harry looked up, "Oh, Danny. Hello."
"Don't tell your parents I'm not in bed, okay?" Danny asked, sitting down on the couch as well.
"They aren't my parents." Harry said, annoyed, but not at Danny, "They're my aunt and uncle- I stay with them for the summers."
"Oh." Danny blinked, "Well, what happened to your parents?"
"Died." Harry said. As if thinking quickly, he added, "In a car crash when I was a baby."
"Oh, I'm sorry." Danny frowned.
Harry shrugged it off, "S'alright."
"So… why do you only stay with them for the summers, then?" Danny asked, "Don't you live with them?"
"I go to a boarding school and stay there as long as I can. The Dursleys don't like me very much." He gestured to the couch he was sleeping on for the term of their stay.
"Well, you can stay in my room if you want." Danny said, "I've got an extra bed in there- my friend Tucker uses it when he sleeps over. They can't possibly hate you so much that they won't allow that."
Harry allowed himself a small smile, but nodded, "Sure." After all, one night in Danny's bedroom would be nice, even if he would be forced back onto the couch the next day.
Danny grinned and flipped the TV on, keeping the volume low, "Cool! If you're tired you can go up now- I dunno, but your aunt and uncle practically passed out at 7:30."
"They'll do that." Harry laughed, "But nah, I've never actually gone to sleep when they make me go to my room. I'm usually trying to get my homework done."
Danny made a face at that, "Eww, homework."
Harry laughed, "I wouldn't be doing it if I didn't enjoy it- My school has fun classes."
"Math and English aren't fun." Danny frowned.
"We don't really have the normal classes at my school- it's a… special school." Harry explained.
"Oh!" Danny grinned, "Aww, man, I wish I could go to a school like that. I hate my school."
Danny's older sister, who was Harry's age, came down the stairs at this point, "I knew you were down here, so don't say a thing, Danny." Jazz said, coming over and sitting on the couch, "You were getting pretty loud."
Danny clamped his hands over his mouth, "Oops!"
Jazz smiled. "I'm Jasmine, but call me Jazz."
"Harry." Harry smiled at her.
Jazz smiled back and turned to the TV, "Gimme the remote."
Danny tossed it over- nothing he liked was on anyway, and as long as Jazz didn't choose the discovery channel or something, he'd be fine with whatever.
Jazz flipped to the movie channel and set the remote down. "It's that ghost movie we couldn't watch because Mom and Dad kept arguing about how 'real' it was."
Danny laughed and focused his attention on the television- they'd only missed the first ten minutes or so, and Danny had been able to get that far into the movie before the arguing picked up.
Harry silently questioned Jazz, who sighed, "Our parents are ghost hunters. Rather horrible ones, but ghost hunters regardless. They're obsessed- their work tends to take over everything. I can't wait to see Aunt Petunia's face when she opens the fridge tomorrow morning to try and make breakfast."
Danny grinned wickedly at that and raced off to the kitchen. When he came back and was questioned about what he'd done, he simply said, "I moved Dad's sausage."
Jazz smiled, "Harry, you'll want to stay as far away from the fridge as possible tomorrow. I know Danny and I will be."
Harry nodded, "Thanks for the warning."
"No problem."Jazz smiled at him. "So, who's the letter from?"She asked, glancing at the letter he was still holding in his hands, "If you don't mind me asking, of course!" she added, having forgotten her manners for a moment.
"It's okay. My friend Ron." Harry said, "He wants me to go stay with him near the end of the summer for a couple of weeks. I'd love to, but there's no chance of them," he gestured towards the stairs, "saying yes."
"Oh." Jazz frowned, "Hmm…" she was deep in thought, and Harry was puzzled for a moment. After five minutes of her not saying anything and continuing to simply think, Harry decided he'd just watch the movie with Danny until she snapped out of it. By the look on the eleven-year-old's face, this was perfectly normal, after all.
About half way through the movie, Jazz suddenly got an idea, "I've got it!"
Danny and Harry glanced over.
"Ron can come here!" Jazz grinned, "You're staying here for two weeks, after all, and we can lie and say he's my friend." Jazz continued to grin, "You may not get to actually go stay with him, but at least you'll get to see him."
Harry frowned, "I don't know if his parents will let him come to the States." That, and, as he added to himself, Ron didn't know a thing about pretending to be a muggle and Jazz and Danny had no idea about his magical heritage.
"Oh." Jazz frowned, "I forgot about that. Oh well, we'll think of something." She assured Harry with a grin.
Harry relaxed a little, "Sure, definitely."
"If you ever want to call him instead of sending letters, you're welcome to our phone." Jazz gestured to the electronic device on the table next to her. "Or any other friends. It's long distance, but mom won't mind."
Danny had a feeling that Jazz was making that up. Still, though, that seemed to make Harry really happy, so it didn't really mind.
Also, the ghost movie? It really sucked.
The three headed up the stairs to bed around eleven, each passing out at a different time. Petunia knocked on the doors (which they had locked the night before) repeatedly every ten minutes from seven on until they finally decided to actually get up, heading downstairs to the kitchen. By this point it was about eight.
"Oh, finally." Petunia said, "Come on, then, time to get you three fed." She said, gesturing to Danny and Jazz, along with Dudley who was sitting at the table. She glanced at Harry, "And where did you sleep last night? We set up a perfectly fine bed for you on the couch."
"Danny let me sleep in his spare bed." Harry shrugged, sitting down at the table, as far away from the fridge and stove as he could be.
Danny smiled at Petunia, pulling his innocent puppy dog eyes look- the one that got him extra cookies as a kid. While it didn't work on Maddie anymore, it was worth a shot against her cousin. "It gets cold down here at night, and I figured that since I don't need the bed, Harry could sleep there." He said.
Petunia smiled at him, "Alright, Danny." She said, patting him on the head. Danny smiled at her, before turning and smirking at Harry, who was holding back laughter. For an eleven-year-old, Danny had the mind of a wicked prankster. He made a mental note to never let him meet Fred and George.
Danny sat down next to his sister at the table, keeping trained eyes on the fridge as Petunia opened it to get out the breakfast supplies. She pulled out the package of Jack's sausage, turning to the kids, "How long has this been in here?" she asked, not really trusting the packaging. Danny had to admit she was more observant than he'd initially thought. Luckily for him, he could answer that question without lying.
"About a week." Danny chimed, "Dad just put them in there."
Petunia nodded and brought the package towards the stove. Danny smirked at Jazz, who had to admit her reaction was going to be hilarious. Petunia opened the package, placing them on the stove. Imagine her surprise when the sausage jumped up off the pan, each now sporting a face and a green, ectoplasmic glow, and started shouting at each other a battle plan to get off the stove and away from Petunia, who they had immediately recognized was NOT their master, nor their master's wife.
As the sausages ran into the living room, Danny gave up and started laughing, "Sorry, Aunt Petunia!" he shouted, totally not meaning a word of what he was saying, "I didn't realize those were dad's special sausages! I'll go get them back- the real ones are in the fridge somewhere." With that, he bolted into the living room to find and coax the sausages out of their hiding place, but mostly to be able to laugh without being glared at.
As Jazz's giggles died down, she noticed Petunia giving Harry a really cold stare, but he simply smirked. Let her think he'd done magic. Since he HADN'T, he couldn't get in trouble for it. Win win situation, in his eyes.
Danny came back in a few minutes later, still looking happy, but laughter under control. Petunia was frying up the real sausages, and the fake, Jack-brand ones were on Danny's shoulder. He walked over to the fridge, and they hopped in, hiding in the back.
"What did your father do to get walking, talking sausages?" Harry asked him, slightly incredulous as to how such a thing could be done without magic.
"I think he stabbed 'em with ectoplasm." Danny shrugged, sitting back down.
"Ectoplasm?" Harry asked.
"Ghost blood." Jazz explained, "Or, at least, that's what we think. He's still trying to figure out exactly what ectoplasm is, but from what we know, it is, quite literally, all that makes up a ghost."
Harry thought to the ghosts that wandered the halls of Hogwarts with a frown on his face. To think of them even having blood was difficult, but them being made up of something that could create walking, talking sausages? A little out there. Then again, he was a wizard- nothing should really be surprising him.
Petunia put the plate of sausages down on the table, Dudley moving from the counter to a chair, deciding he wanted to be closer to the food. They started eating, Harry included, because Petunia knew she couldn't snap at Harry for eating too much with the other children around. (Noting, of course, the fact that to Petunia, Harry eating too much was him having more than one piece of sausage. There were at least twenty pieces on the plate.)
Once they'd finished breakfast, a good half of it going to Dudley, Petunia stared the Fenton kids down, "Vernon, Dudley and I are going to go out for a little bit, but we'll be back in an hour or two. Will you be okay that long?"
Jazz smiled, "Don't worry, Aunt Petunia, we'll be perfectly fine. I'm plenty responsible."
"Good girl." Petunia patted her on the head, "Vernon! Come on!" she shouted up the stairs to her husband, who walked down, and the three Dursleys left.
Danny grinned once they were gone, "Awesome! Now I don't have to act like I like her. Hey, Harry, wanna play some video games? We can invite Tucker and Sam over if you want."
"Make sure your escape ladder's hooked up!" Jazz reminded him, "If Petunia comes home and sees them, I don't want her freaking out- best if they snuck out your window again."
Harry raised an eyebrow, but Jazz shook her head, "Don't ask. I'm going up to my room. Call if you need anything." She smiled.
Danny grinned at Harry and grabbed the phone, dialing Tucker's number. A short conversation with him, then one with his other friend Sam later, he and Harry were waiting for the two to show up on the doorstep for an day filled with video games.
"Man, how irresponsible of a babysitter." Jazz rolled her eyes as she hung up the phone later that day after ordering pizza for her and everyone else currently in the house. Petunia had neglected to inform the children that they'd have to fend for themselves for lunch, so Jazz hadn't even thought of it. At 2, when Danny came downstairs saying he was hungry, she pulled out the emergency cash her mother had given her and ordered a pizza for them.
It came within twenty minutes and she called them down from upstairs, setting the pizza on the coffee table in the living room and taking a slice for herself before settling down on the couch, flipping through the channels. The three eleven-year-olds, and Harry, who was not eleven, came down the stairs and settled themselves to eat pizza and watch whatever channel Jazz ended up choosing.
They continued to eat pizza and had started to watch another movie on what Danny had dubbed 'The Bad Movie Channel' when there was a tap at the window. Confused, Jazz got up, not noticing Harry freeze.
She opened the curtains to see an owl sitting on the sill, a letter tied to its leg. Jazz turned to Danny, having a strange feeling that this was his fault somehow (it always was.) "Danny… why's there an owl at the window?"
"An owl?" Danny hopped up, "Cool, I wanna see!"
Jazz sighed- not what she was going for, "Danny! Focus!" she snapped her fingers.
Danny scowled, "What?"
"He's got a note tied to his leg." Sam frowned, opening the window and letting the owl fly in, despite Jazz's shouted protests. The owl, however, simply landed on the table and held his leg out.
Tucker was the closest, so he untied the letter, the owl taking off through the still-open window, and into the sky.
"Umm… It's addressed to you, Danny." Tucker said, holding the letter out to him.
Now Harry was confused. Why was his cousin getting mail from someone in the wizarding world? He was a muggle. Or it at least seemed that way- Harry hadn't noticed anything strange or wizard-like around him besides the sausages from that morning, and he'd had an explanation for those as if they were perfectly normal in the house.
Danny took the envelope and broke the wax seal, pulling it out. He scanned it over, then looked at Harry. "Why does this letter say that you can explain everything I need to know?"
As if it was even possible, Harry paled even further.
What is this fic, you may ask? A challenge to myself. What is the challenge, you ask?
To take an overused idea (character from a fandom that is NOT Harry Potter goes to Hogwarts) and make it actually seem plausible.
The second one is to write long chapters, thus the three-times-my-normal-word-length chapter.
I've been having trouble keeping ideas straight in my head lately, so these challenges are in an attempt to fix that. (Because yes, putting more ideas in my overcrammed head actually does work.)
With all that said and done, I must add one more note. Have faith in me. If you see something you think is fishy, point it out, and I'll tell you whether I have an explanation for it or not. (Everyone makes mistakes, and if you point out something that seems weird, I'll know where I have to put explanations I don't have, as well.)
So, review, though don't be too harsh—this is just a challenge to myself, and I'm not writing it to please anyone.